“Feelings come and go like clouds in a windy sky. Conscious breathing is my anchor.” —Thich Nhat Hanh
Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the United States, affecting 40 million adults in the United States age 18 and older. If you are one of those people, you know how difficult it can be to live with anxiety. Thankfully, there is a lot of help available, including yoga. In this blog post, we will discuss how yoga can be used to overcome anxiety. We will also provide a 20 minute practice you can do to ease your anxiety.
What is anxiety and what are the symptoms?
Anxiety is a feeling of worry, nervousness, or unease. It can be mild or severe. People with anxiety may feel restless, have trouble sleeping, and feel like they’re “on edge.”
Some people with anxiety disorders may avoid certain situations out of fear. Others may experience physical symptoms such as a racing heart, sweating, or dizziness.
There are different types of anxiety disorders, including:
– Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD)
– Panic disorder
– Social anxiety disorder
– Specific phobias
– Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
Anxiety disorders are common, affecting about 18% of adults in the United States. But only about 37% of people with anxiety disorders receive treatment.
How yoga can help ease anxiety
Yoga can be an effective treatment for anxiety. It’s a mind-body practice that combines physical postures, breathing techniques, and meditation.
A small study found that yoga may help reduce symptoms of generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). Participants practiced yoga for 3 months. They also kept a diary of their anxiety symptoms.
At the end of the study, the participants who took yoga classes had significantly lower levels of anxiety than those who didn’t take yoga classes.
The benefits of yoga for people with anxiety
Yoga has many benefits. It may help to ease anxiety by:
– Reducing stress
– Improving sleep
– Increasing feelings of relaxation
– Boosting confidence and self-esteem
– Improving physical fitness
Yoga may also help to reduce symptoms of other mental health conditions, such as depression.
A 20-minute yoga practice for anxiety
This simple yoga practice can be done anywhere, at any time. All you need is a mat or a towel and some comfortable clothing.
Tips for sticking to a yoga routine when you’re struggling with anxiety
If you’re struggling with anxiety, it can be difficult to stick to a yoga routine. Here are some tips that may help:
-Set realistic goals. If you’re just starting out, don’t try to do an hour-long class every day. Start with something manageable, like a 20-minute class, and gradually increase the time as you feel more comfortable.
-Find a class that’s right for you. There are many different types of yoga, so find one that feels good for your body and mind. If you’re not sure where to start, ask a friend or yoga instructor for recommendations.
-Make time for yourself. Yoga is supposed to be relaxing, so don’t feel like you have to do it at a certain time or place. If you can’t make it to a class, practice at home or in a quiet spot outdoors.
-Be patient. It takes time to see results from yoga, so don’t get discouraged if you don’t feel better right away. Stick with it and you will likely see a difference in your anxiety levels over time.
A word of caution about using yoga to treat anxiety disorders
If you’re thinking about using yoga to treat your anxiety disorder, I want to offer a word of caution. While yoga can be an effective tool for managing anxiety, it’s important to remember that it’s not a cure-all. Yoga should be used in conjunction with other treatment methods, such as therapy and medication.
If you’re struggling with anxiety, yoga may be a helpful treatment option. It’s important to find a class that’s right for you and to be patient as you see results. Remember that yoga is not a cure-all, but rather one part of a larger treatment plan.
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Image by Sofie Zbořilová from Pixabay